Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy

Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy (ESWT )

This treatment is low risk and nonevasive. In studies in Europe, when shock wave has been administered for over 10 years, patients with chronic plantar faciitis rated a 80% successful outcome with just one treatment. More recent studies show an even higher success rate. Currently, the Epos Ultra provides a treatment modality that is more accurate and cost effective than competitive machines.

What is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis (commonly referred to as a "heel spur") is a common cause of heel pain and affects about 2.5 million people each year in the U.S.

The muscle that stretches along the bottom of the foot (the plantar fascia) is responsible for maintaining the arch of your foot. When the plantar fascia pulls away from the bone, your heel becomes painful. Your body may react by filling this space with new bone - a heel spur. Most people think that heel spurs are the cause of their foot pain, but the pain is actually cause by the inflammation or irritation of your plantar fascia muscle.

Plantar fasciitis is caused by a number of factors and is common sports injury among runners, walkers and athletes. Overweight people and those whose jobs require a lot of standing or walking are also at higher risk. Other factors leading to plantar fasciitis include flat or high-arched feet, worn out or improper shoes, jogging on sand and increasing age.

How does Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy work?

Shock wave therapy was originally developed by Dornier MedTech to break up kidney stones in the body. The therapy was approved by the FDA in the early 1980s and today is the standard treatment choice for urinary stones.

An important benefit of this therapy is that it's delivered outside the body (extracorporeally), so many of the risks associated with surgery are eliminated. The shock waves actually stimulate or trigger your body's own repair mechanisms. Doctors around the world, especially in Europe, have successfully used this same shock wave technology since the early 1990s.

What are the benefits and risks involved?

Based on worldwide medical experience, extracorporeal shock wave therapy is a safe and effective alternative to the traditional treatment methods available. Shock wave therapy relieves pain and provides a short recovery period. This therapy may eliminate the need for surgery altogether, which is often expensive and could cause other health problems.

There are very few side effects or risks involved with shock wave therapy. The most common patient complaint during therapy is some pain or discomfort during and after treatment. Other side effects might include minor skin bruising and/or reddening, as well as swelling for a brief period of time.